The tech world is at a fascinating moment of flux, ladies and gentlemen. The mobile phone market is slowly transforming into the smartphone market, the PC market has just begun evolving into the tablet market, and the living room PC seems to be finally becoming a viable proposition. But at times like these, fortunes are made and lost, and this week has seen a slew of terrible results from a range of manufacturers.
First it was revealed that Motorola's much-hyped Xoom tablet sold only 440,000 units in the last quarter. Then Nintendo dropped the price of the 3DS after it was revealed it was being outsold two-to-one by its 2D predecessor. Now we're hearing really awful things about the sale of the Logitech Revue set-top box. According to a statement this week by Logitech, the Revue - which lets you watch internet video on your TV - had 'slightly negative' sales in the last quarter-year. In other words, more units were returned unsold by retailers than were sold. The company has responded by aping Nintendo and slashing the price to just $99.
Why does this matter? Who gives a monkey's about Logitech, best known for making cheap mice and webcams? Fair question. But the Revue matters to more than just Logitech. It's the main example so far released of hardware running Google TV, the search giant's assault on the living room. Google TV devices run a customised version of Android and Google wants them to become ubiquitous, so these disastrous hardware sales are an embarassment for them as well as Logitech.
Hopefully the reduced price, along with major updates to the platform Google is promising for later this year, will improve the situation.